When I’m stressing about posting a delicious recipe to you, my reader, instead of all these giveaways or reviews, I’m so glad that I have something from my dear friend, Holly Clegg in my inbox. Her friendship as well as her presence her at This Mama Cooks! on a Diet has been such a blessing this year. I’m sure you feel the same way, especially when you read how easy and stress free this recipe is!
You can find more of Holly’s trim& TERRIFIC® recipes at hollyclegg.com and The Healthy Cooking Blog. And don’t forget that Holly’s cookbooks [affiliate link) make wonderful gifts for anyone trying to eat in a more healthy way!
The holidays are a magical time of fun and festivities, but before you know it, they can turn into one of the busiest, most stressful seasons making your ‘To Do’ list longer than ever! My perfect party pick-ups to the rescue! I’m here to help, keeping stress out of the kitchen. Guests like easy-to-eat treats and the Easy Chocolate Truffles Dipped in White Chocolate from my trim&TERRIFIC Too Hot in the Kitchen [affiliate link] cookbook are just the ticket. Keep these easy, crowd-pleasing recipe ingredients in your kitchen for my simple go-to delicious bites of goodness your guests will request for holidays to come.
If you can find gluten free chocolate sandwich cookies (Glutino and Trader Joe's make them), these will be a great treat for your gluten free friends and relatives!
Dietary Exchanges: 1/2 other carbohydrate, 1 fat
Easy Chocolate Truffles Dipped in White Chocolate is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
If you have kids, you’re probably familiar with Flat Stanley, the popular globetrotting character, educational icon, and now iPhone app. I’ve personally had a few visits from Flat Stanley via the U.S. Postal Service myself. That guy certainly gets around!
Well, Flat Stanley’s latest adventure might just be his most crucial in helping to preserve the health of our children and our planet. Thanks to a partnership between Flatter World and Cascadian Farm, Flat Stanley is now helping to educate children about organic food and farming through a virtual tour of an organic farm. The tour, which is part of the existing Flat Stanley app, offers children a fun way to learn about organic farming and where their food comes from. It also provides teachers and parents with the tools needed to excite future generations about organic food and farming.
The Organic Trade Association has reported an increase in the purchase of organic food. In fact, 80 percent of households purchase some organic foods, an increase from 73 percent of in 2009!
To help promote the partnership, I’m giving away to one lucky winner an indoor home gardening kit for kids, an Organic Flat Stanley cut-out, and a selection of Cascadian Farm products – total package worth approximately $150. (Note: the winner will be receiving more Cascadian Farm products than show in the picture. The exact Casadian products delivered to the winner will depend on availability. The winner cannot choose what products s/he would like to receive.)
All you need to do to enter is tell us why you choose to buy organic foods. (And if you don’t buy organics, please share that, too. I’m interested in all opinions here at This Mama Cooks!)
Flat Stanley Goes Organic – Cascadian Farm Giveaway is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
Shakshuka (or shakshouka) is a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine. It’s traditionally done in a cast iron pan with a tomato based sauce and eggs as the main ingredients. I’ve seen it made with everything from chickpeas to potatoes and done with Middle Eastern or Mediterranean spices, meats and cheeses. How ever you make it, it’s a show stopper – gorgeous yellow yokes, beautiful green leaves and the red sauce served in a skillet are sure to have everyone oohing and awwing. Since shakshuk features eggs, it’s often served as a breakfast or brunch dish and served with pita, gluten free toast, or crusty bread to sop up the sauce. You could also serve it for lunch or dinner with a side salad. And it’s perfect for the holidays since it’s red and green!
I’ve decided to make my shakshuka recipe as easy and healthy as possible. One note on the eggs. Some people like runny eggs, some don’t. If you have a mixed group, serve the “runny” people first, then stick your skittle back in the oven for a few more minutes. Or serve the shakshuka in oven safe bowls and put those back in the oven for a couple of minutes to firm up the eggs. Either way, everyone’s happy.
Like my Mediterranean Style Shakshuka recipe is variation on the real Middle Eastern shakshouka, look what happens when this reporter looks for the “real Meg Ryan.” Either way, we both make a real good sauce with Contadina!
Here are more real good recipes from Foodie and Contadina!
Every mealtime masterpiece starts with Contadina and ends with a clean plate. Our mission is to gather families together around the dinner table with our delicious, Italian-style recipes and carefully-sorted Roma-style tomatoes.
Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Contadina via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Contadina.
Mediterranean Style Shakshuka is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
As a Benefiber Blogger, I’ve been given the opportunity to giveaway a $100 American Express gift card and a Benefiber product to one lucky This Mama Cooks! On a Diet reader! All you need to do to enter is share how you’re staying healthy this holiday season. Enter below!
Benefiber $100 AMEX gift card giveaway is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
I love the idea of making homemade gifts, especially of the edible kind. Here’s a recipe from the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council that you can easily put together in a few days from either fresh or frozen blueberries. You don’t have to spend a lot on fancy glass bottles either. Cute Mason jars are all the rage these days. And adding a homemade gift tag and a cute ribbon is a nice touch. If you’re going to make a large batch, head to your local Sam’s Club or Costco for the best price on big bags of frozen blueberries.
For more recipes and information on winter fresh blueberries, please visit littlebluedynamos.com
Homemade edible gifts: Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
Last month I shared with you a couple of brunch time recipes that would be a great way to add some Benefiber® to your daily routine in my Mexican themed brunch: Chorizo Breakfast Casserole and Healthy Horchata post. If you’re gluten free and not getting fiber from whole grains, it’s especially important to add fiber to your diet from fruit, vegetables and products like Benefiber.
If you’re gluten free and very strict about it, make sure to buy certified gluten free oatmeal. Oatmeal is naturally gluten free, but some brands of oatmeal may be subject to cross-contamination since they’re processed on the same machinery as gluten containing foods.
This month, I’m featuring a recipe for Raw Oatmeal “Risotto” from Benefiber and Chef Richard Blais. It’s perfect for the holiday season when we get too busy to eat in a healthy way, especially with all those unhealthy treats and overindulging during holiday parties! Fiber is one of the most important parts in everyone’s diet and it’s easy to forget to have your daily recommended amount during the holiday season. By incorporating Benefiber into your holiday meals, you can keep your friends and family on track – and they won’t even taste the difference!
Below are some holiday prep and cooking tips from Chef Richard Blais to help you “Better it with Benefiber” this holiday season.
I’m a Benefiber® brand ambassador. I’ve been compensated for my work and all opinions are my own.
Stay healthy during the holidays: Raw Oatmeal "Risotto" is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
Don’t let the name fool you. Besides offering online crafting classes, Craftsy also has holiday gifting and cooking courses. Even someone like me who feels pretty confident in the kitchen could use a little help when it comes to baking pie crusts or making sauces. However, I don’t have time to take a course at the local junior college. Instead, the beauty of taking an online Craftsy cooking class is that I can take it when it’s convenient for me, even if I only have a few minutes here and there to devote to it. Even better, I can bookmark important moments in the video so that I can easily re-watch before I attempt the recipe – or even when I’m cooking using the Craftsy app on my iPhone.
I decided to take the Sweet & Savory Food Gifts class, guided by best-selling author Diane Morgan. I thought it would give me some great ideas on presents to make some of my neighbors who’ve been so helpful this year after my brain surgery.
The class (which sells for $19.99 instead of $39.99 ONLY if you use this link) shows you how to make six different recipes plus tips on using printable recipe cards and gift tags and tips on using fabric, ribbon and household items to turn any favorite recipes into beautifully put together presents!
She showed how to use a slow cooker to make a Winter Weekend French Onion soup, and bundle it with French bread and Gruyère cheese for a gift basket. This was nice but a little impractical since it needed refrigeration.
I loved the unique rub recipe Diane demonstrated, which is perfect for anyone who loves to grill or barbecue.
The online class presentation was very well put together. You are given a thorough description, list of materials, instructor bio, and an FAQ. You didn’t have to take the whole class in one sitting, but could jump around and take the sections out of order. You can come back anytime since once you buy the class it is yours and you can view it numerous times. Now that just about everyone has access to a laptop or tablet in the kitchen, you can cook along with Diane and put the video on pause while you complete the steps, too!
You’re also given all the recipes (including some additional ones and gift giving tips) in a downloadable PDF. There’s also a place to ask questions – take time to read other people's questions because you’ll learn some good tips as well.
I decided to make Diane’s Backyard BBQ Rub since I already had all the ingredients in my cupboard – including some cute canning and spice canisters left over from other projects. Diane’s video and recipe were very straight forward and easy to do. However, I thought the rub could have been a little sweeter so I added some more of the no calorie natural sugar substitute I was using instead of sugar. Using your favorite no calorie sugar substitute makes it perfect for anyone on your gift giving list who’s watching their calorie, sugar or carb intake.
You can put the rub in little zip lock baggies, mini canning jars, or pretty glass or ceramic jars with lids. These make a great gift for foodies, coworkers or anyone who loves to cook or grill. Combine it with some grilling tools for a really nice gift. This is also a great teacher gift for the kids to help make, from measuring out the spices, to decorating labels, to putting ribbons and bows on the jars!
You can use Craftsy’s free “Handmade with Love” gift tag download or just a stick on a label. I’m partial to the canning labels that wash off easily with a little soaking so you can easily reuse the jars with little fuss.
Since it’s the holidays, any of the Craftsy cooking classes would make terrific gifts:
Want to treat yourself or a friend to a Craftsy’s holiday gifting or cooking course? Well, Craftsy is offering my readers up to 25% off a full-length Craftsy course! Click here to get your special discount on any of their cooking courses!
And here are a few freebies for you, too!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Craftsy. The opinions and text are all mine.
Give the gift of cooking with Craftsy – now for 25% off! #Craftsy is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
This month I’m working with Alamo to share some “snacks ‘n’ hacks” on recipes and tips that will work well when driving to a relative’s home for the holiday festivities. If you’re traveling this holiday season, you may want to sign up for Alamo Insiders, which gives members a guaranteed 10% off their rental, and use Alamo Deal Retriever to find all of the best currently available Alamo deals. You can also connect with Alamo on their Facebook page.
Let’s say that you’ve been asked to bring along a few dishes to grandma’s house to share during the holiday feast. Wonder what’ll survive the long car ride?
Mashed Potatoes! If you’ve been asked to bring mashed potatoes, why not make them while you’re there? If you’re concerned about hogging the stove, use Ore-Ida’s Steam n’ Mash Cut Russet Potatoes. Most of the cooking is done in the microwave with minimal time on the stove top. (Check with your host to see if you’ll need to bring butter and milk, too.) Even better, try making my Roasted Pepper Mashed Potatoes. You’ll need to bring a few more ingredients and spend a little more time on the stove, but it’s so worth it.
Cranberry Sauce! If you’re driving, pack a cooler with homemade cranberry sauce, like my Sugar Free Cranberry Sauce or Holly Clegg’s Easy No Cook Cranberry Sauce. If you’re worried about spoilage, freeze the cranberry sauce ahead of time in a plastic freezer bag. It should thaw out by the time you’ve reached your destination.And don’t forget to bring a serving dish and spoon. Nothing worse than when you have to serve food up with a cheap plastic spoon dug up from the back of a drawer!
Have panini grill, will travel! If you’re staying at grandma’s for a few days, how about offering to make up some awesome leftover turkey and cranberry sauce paninis for the family? When packing, throw your panini grill or pan in the back of the car. After the holiday when everyone’s watching football, head to the store for some good quality bread and deli sliced cheese – and get those paninis grilling! Sure Uncle Joe will think you’re a little too fancy for him, so offer to put some barbecue sauce on his panini to make it more to his liking.
How to travel with your slow cooker! Nothing worse than getting to a family’ member’s home for the holidays with a dish and there’s no more room in the oven to keep it warm. Instead, just about everything from stuffing to mashed sweet potatoes can be kept warm in a slow cooker. Many slow cooker models come with travel friendly hinged locking lids, carrying handles, and insulated cases. If you don’t have any of these, here’s how to travel with your slow cooker to avoid spills.
Alamo wants to make this holiday travel season a little less hectic with these prize packs that are perfect for bringing meals on long road trips – or just to a friend’s home down the street. Feel free to enter both Rafflecopter giveaways. However, only one prize per winner.
There will be one winner for the best travel-friendly recipe (prize worth approximately $167). The prize pack includes:
There will be a second winner for the best food travel-hack (prize worth approximately $180). The prize pack includes:
Holiday Food & Hacks Giveaway with Alamo #AlamoHolidayHacks is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
Got leftovers? This recipe works great with leftover turkey from Thanksgiving, leftover pork from my Slow Cooker Spicy Pulled Pork Tacos, leftover chicken or even some shredded beef – whatever you have on hand including a combination of two or more meats if you’re adventurous.
Believe it or not, I never made enchiladas before! Not a problem, as this leftover enchilada recipe was easy to make. I even made my own enchilada sauce from scratch using Emeril Lagasse’s Easy Enchilada Sauce recipe. (I substituted all purpose gluten free flour mix for the flour.) If you're using store bought, check the ingredients to make sure it's gluten free. To keep my leftover enchiladas on the healthy side, I kept the cheese to a minimum, too - just 1 cup total. I also used corn tortillas to make sure it was gluten free as well.
And the verdict from the family? Two thumbs up and no complaints about the lack of cheese! I liked it so much I even ate it for breakfast with a fried egg on top!
My Leftover Enchiladas recipe is for a double batch – one to eat now and one to freeze for later. Feel free to cut the recipe in half if you wish and use the half the can of corn and tomatoes in chili or soup.
Healthy Gluten Free Leftover Enchiladas is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>
From the Nichols family to you and yours, Happy Thanksgiving!
Happy Thanksgiving! is a post from: This Mama Cooks! Stop by for more healthy recipes!]]>